On the first day of summer, I woke up and poured my coffee like normal.
I washed my face, responded to a few emails and texts… It was a pretty average day.
My two dogs, Emma and Elenor, continued to remain civil yet distant. There was nothing which stood out as extraordinary.
On the first day of autumn, I woke up and poured my coffee, just like the beginning of the seasons which fell before.
In a new home. (well, new to us anyway)
In a different state.
With only one dog, the other having left this world.
At forty-two years old, I am no stranger to how quickly things can change, and yet this particular reflection has me overwhelmed by the truth growing there.
Hello, from Pennsylvania!
I missed Emily’s link up, but I’m sharing anyway because the reflection is good for the soul. (You can ask anyone I talk to regularly, I am so out-of-sorts and behind!)
So, in that sunny season, what did my life have me learning?
1.) I am capable, but just because I can doesn’t mean I should…
This move was hard. The hardest we’ve had. I had to challenge my physical capabilities on an almost constant basis, which created all forms of other complications. My health and chronic garbage aside, I found I was far more able than I realized. I also concluded I can’t ever do anything like that again. It isn’t that I’m not capable, as much as I can’t do that to myself.
Also, moving is terrible and I don’t want to do it again. Even. I will die in this house.
2.) I still expect summer to be filled with long, lazy days and sun-kissed bliss. It never is…
This isn’t just because of moving, it is simply this (societally induced???) notion of what I have always imagined summers to be, but for one reason or another they never are.
It isn’t a bad thing, and thankfully as our crazy summer unfolded, I really had to use lenses of Grace to differentiate between truth and fiction.
3.) Airline Miles are not nearly as awesome as they used to be…
Do you remember back when miles used to accumulate and when ready we could simply redeem them? Not too long ago, a roundtrip to Australia, for the husband, would have resulted in a free domestic ticket. This time around, FOUR round trips to Australia, plus three years of far-too-frequent domestic flights resulted in us still have to pay a ridiculous amount of money for “miles” so we could buy a ticket to go see our son.
A part of me wants to say, in a gratefully optimistic tone, well, at least they build up even if it’s slowly… But they expire, so I’m telling that sweet side of me to zip it. It’s irritating. (on top of baggage rates increasing… Do I sound like a cranky old lady yet? I feel like one, so I’ll take it!)
4.) I really like Pennsylvania and it was the right decision…
I’ll be honest, this state is the LAST place I thought we’d end up. My husband was looking all over and even considered a couple of overseas positions. The one state we BELIEVED we were destined for- Utah- was the very wrong choice, we came to realize. Had someone asked me, on that first day of summer, if we were presented with both PA and Utah positions, which would we choose- HANDS DOWN both Chw and I would have said “UTAH!!!!” If you had asked our kids, they would have told you, without a moment’s hesitation, that we’d choose Utah. Ask friends? Family? Utah. And then, one evening brought us to the brink of choosing and we both knew overwhelmingly that Utah was not the path.
I am grateful for how things turned out. We love our house. We are getting to know our area. We have fallen head-over-heels with certain bits of it. We never found a home in Michigan. We never liked it, never got plugged in or connected. There is a mentality there which we just don’t mesh well with, but the first thirty minutes here showed us it’s a much better fit and twenty-six days later (for me) we are still seeing that.
And no one is more shocked than me. :)
5.) I love dogs, but…
I’ve loved dogs my entire life. LOVED dogs!
I have had to sit in that vet office and say goodbye to three in two years, and I can’t do that anymore. My house, my yard, my dog-loving-heart have hit me hard with puppy fever. Elenor would LOVE a puppy friend. My heart still aches for a blue-tick-beagle boy, as my other one lived way too short a life and I loved him so… BUT, I can’t do that anymore. I cannot sit there and say goodbye.
I love dogs. I never thought the period would morph into a comma and be followed by a “but”, yet here we are.
Last but not least, we come to the heart of what summer has taught me: I have a hard time with people. Not all people… But, lets say, random strangers who want to buy/sell something over the internet. Specifically I’m referencing Facebook Marketplace and Ebay. I just… I keep waiting for my people-patience to rejuvenate, but it isn’t. I feel like the experience of downsizing and relocating while ALSO dealing with people in the afore-mentioned settings may have broken me irreparably.
When you add to that juvenile, cliquish behavior by grown women, people who can’t follow through with something and well, it’s actually probably a pretty long list. (see: old, cranky lady!)
But not YOU! Obviously, I love you.
I know I’m super late, but I’d love to hear if summer taught you anything…